'The Challenge' Host T.J. Lavin Responds to Fan Who Claims the Show Is 'Scripted'

For the past couple of seasons of The Challenge, many viewers have claimed the show is rigged and believe the producers intervene to guarantee a specific outcome. A fan reached out to host T.J. Lavin regarding the rumors, and the former BMX rider responded.

Many fans thought season 35 was rigged for Johnny ‘Bananas’ Devenanzio to win

Veteran Johnny “Bananas” Devanazio became the show’s most winningest contestant after taking home the crown in Total Madness. However, as the series aired, many viewers suspected things were favoring the veteran too much.

For example, regulars Cara Maria Sorbello and Paulie Calafiore claimed they were axed from the season so Bananas would have fewer people working against him.

Additionally, she claimed the producers “rigged” it for him in a direct message conversation with a fan, noting the series is more of a show than a competition.

Viewers also thought the producers had full control over the elimination he won, which involved finding pre-positioned batteries.

Finally, throughout the season, the competitors spoke about the grand prize as if one player received the entire million dollar check.

However, during the finals, host T.J. Lavin announced the first man and woman would split it, taking home $500,000 each. Some fans feel producers changed it to give Devenanzio the victory after it became clear Jenny West would win.

Lolo Jones and Josh Martinez have implied season 36 is rigged for CT Tamburello

While Devenanzio didn’t return for the following season, Double Agents, veteran CT Tamburello did, and many viewers believe producers are pulling similar tricks to guarantee the three-time champ wins.

For example, Olympian and rookie Lolo Jones claimed producers unfairly gave Tamburello and his then-partner Big T Fazakerley a daily mission win by allowing them to drop in the water outside of the established parameters.

She accused the crew of changing the rules to favor the fan-favorite team and insisted producers forced her to quit the competition. When CT became a double agent by winning that mission, he wanted to steal Josh Martinez’s gold skull.

However, his alliance protected him and voted in Devin Walker instead. A security breach gave CT what he wanted anyway, and he sent “the Goof” home.

Following the elimination, Martinez claimed his harness malfunctioned, making it “impossible” to finish. Due to Jones and Martinez’s comments, many fans believe this season is rigged for CT to win.

T.J. Lavin denies the show is ‘scripted’

A fan asked Lavin about the rigging rumors under a recent Instagram post from the former BMX rider. The follower pointed out that several Challengers have called the series a show, implying it’s not an actual competition.

They also noted the information has “ruined the show” for them because they can’t help but “wonder if it’s all just a script.” The host answered, promising the series has “never been scripted.”

He also included he’s so sure because he’s presented the show since 2006’s The Gauntlet 2 and has watched everything unfold firsthand.

While many fans agreed the show isn’t scripted, as in producers tell contestants what to say, they still believe the crew has a hand in manipulating situations to guarantee specific outcomes. The Challenge 36 airs Wednesdays at 8/7 Central on MTV.

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